Poland and the Baltic states, in cooperation with the Scandinavian countries and definitely together with Czechia, Slovakia, Romania, and Balkan allies, should quickly begin work on a proposal for a new security policy for Europe. It is about using the moment and taking the initiative. The elections in France may end up useful, regardless of their outcome.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine has shown every strategic weakness of Europe. It is doubtful if, without the American effort, the EU would be capable of the current mobilization. It is also apparent how intense the old internal conflicts on security policy are. Their axis is always the attitude towards Russia and to the idea of a transatlantic West.
This is about making use of the next three years — ahead of the presidential elections in the U.S. — to undermine the ties with Moscow and strengthen the transatlantic alliance. It is a chance to rebuild the European security architecture for our region’s benefit.
The elections in France may become an important factor in this change. If they are ultimately won by Emmanuel Macron, he, despite being weakened politically, will want to use his second term to push Europe toward a “strategic sovereignty.” Today, his plans are entirely discredited by current events and have become even more glaringly anti-American and pro-Russian. It is not a coincidence that in recent weeks the French idea of the strategic sovereignty of Europe was praised by Dmitry Medvedev.
A Marine Le Pen victory creates a whole other situation, as she announces that she no longer wants the exit of France from the EU but will make efforts to leave NATO – an old Gaullist idea – and end the military cooperation with Germany. That last part could be useful in putting Germany deep in the structures of the Atlantic alliance and forcing them to take more responsibility for the new security policy in Europe, free from the burden of the French anti-Atlantic attitude.
In this way, Berlin could finally repay its security debt to our region and to the entirety of Europe, after two decades of absurd policy.